May 2016: 8 Faces of Faith-Based Leadership

eNews Masthead - Transforming Challenges
In this Issue

Opening Remarks

Leaders in every organization need to develop certain skills, and an extra set of these skills is required for leaders in faith-based organizations.   In this edition of Transforming Challenges, we describe these eight “faces” of faith-based leadership.

At The Reid Group, we have a passion for helping leaders and organizations transform their challenges into opportunities to create a better world. One of the ways we do that is through this e-letter, Transforming Challenges. Is there someone you know who could benefit from receiving it? Forward this edition to them and encourage them to subscribe for themselves. They’ll thank you—and so do we!

The Reid Group News

  • As we say goodbye to Jane Cardwell, our Office Manager for the last 15 years, we also want to introduce Fiona Dempsey who will be filling the role of Office Manager. Godspeed, Jane and welcome, Fiona!
  • Maureen Gallagher is leading The Reid Group team that will facilitate a joint strategic planning process for the Duluth Area Catholic Schools and explore the feasibility of building a Catholic high school.
  • Tom Reid led a retreat for St. Mary of the Assumption parish in Van Wert OH in early May.
  • John Reid has been selected as the project manager for a three-phase project for the ecumenical and interfaith School of Theology and Ministry at Seattle University. The first phase involves gathering archival material on the School and its predecessor organizations as well as interviews with faculty, alumni and donors from the 1960s to the present. In the second phase, the project will interpret the history and identify learnings for the Church, the communities in which the students serve and ongoing formation for students. The third phase will celebrate the School’s history in the fall of 2017.
  • Tom Reid represented The Reid Group at the A. J. Gallagher Convocation in Dallas May 4-6.
  • John Reid and Tom Reid are nearing completion of the search for an Executive Director for the National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministries. The search surfaced 71 prospects and interviewed four finalists, and made a recommendation to the Board in mid-May.
  • Tom Reid will make a presentation in the Diocese of Orange in California on self-care of the minister for a convocation of priests in mid-May.

So as you look at your individual or organizational future, what are your challenges? Could you benefit from skilled support? Give us a call at 206-432-3565 or send us an e-mail to start transforming those challenges into opportunities.

The Reid Group teleseminar series

  • Is your organization wrestling with challenging issues?
  • As a leader are you wondering how to bring people together in constructive ways?

You are invited to The Reid Group Teleseminar:  How to Discuss What Matters Most

May 18, 2016
4pm ET / 3pm CT / 2pm MT / 1pm PT

In this interactive teleseminar experience we will cover the principles and practices to engage issues and challenges critical to your organization.  Some of the topics to be covered include:

  • Four Types of Listening
  • Four Intentions
  • Conversation Guidelines
  • Key Suspension Tips to get everyone’s voice into the conversation
  • Grounding in Contemplative Listening
  • Engaging Powerful Questions
  • And more

Space is limited, so register today!

If there is a topic you would like to see us explore, send your suggestions to

Feature Focus

8 Faces of Faith-Based Leadership

Effective leaders in any organization face a variety of demands as they focus on living out the organization’s mission and living into its vision. The “usual” demands involve working with Boards to shape the vision and practical steps to achieving it, delegating responsibilities to key staff and supervising their work, and managing the organization’s finances.

Other challenges for all leaders include managing change effectively, addressing conflicts that arise in every group to resolve the conflict, build morale and allow for better collective thinking.

Leaders in faith-based organizations need to manage these challenges and meet these demands within the core values of the organization’s tradition, and clarify the expectations of leaders in different settings (parish, congregation, diocese, school, etc.). Faith-based leaders must have both an appreciation for the tradition’s current expression and be in touch with emerging trends and realities-new voices need to be recognized and responded to for organization’s to grow in meaning and effectiveness.

Faith-based organizational leaders need to develop their leadership skills in eight areas:

As a leader
Leaders need to come to an understanding of the general responsibilities of leadership and their own particular style of and approach to leadership.

As an organizational leader
What is the life cycle of an organization? What is the mission statement for your organization? What are the stages of development in creating effective teams for your organization?

As a spiritual leader
The spirituality of leadership is about aligning our lives with the Divine sources of energy that are intending this world to become a place of justice and love. As leaders we are asked to be of service to this Divine intention. As servants, through listening, humility, obedience, discernment, service, work and celebration, we experience the paradoxical freedom from what is and become the shapers of what might be. Bill Grace, Spirituality and Leadership

As a leader in changing times
Helping an organization navigate change means leaders need to understand the dynamics of transition and why it can be so threatening to people.

As a leader in times of conflict
Conflict is a fact of life in any group-it’s the natural result of dealing with differences. To manage conflict effectively, leaders need to develop both their communication and listening skills.

As an ethical leader
Many faith-based organizations have no clearly-defined code of ethics for their leaders. Consequently, leaders in these organizations need to develop their own code of conduct in areas of accountability, confidentiality, relationship dynamics, and the use of power.

As a collaborative leader
Collaboration in faith-based leadership assumes a fundamental experience of being equal with one’s colleagues, involves a gift-centered rather than office-centered approach, and requires more work, skills and energy than other forms of leadership.

As a pastoral leader
Pastoral leadership focuses on “the heart of the matter:”  What are the greatest needs in the organization and how can leaders respond?

Leaders in faith-based organizations need to put on all these “faces” and no one comes to faith-based leadership “fully formed.” Effective leaders know the importance of ongoing leadership formation in these areas and make it a priority for themselves and for their teams.


The Art of Change: Faith, Vision and Prophetic Planning

Think about what your organization could do if the process of planning met the inevitability of change head-on—and it resulted in significant success.

bookcoverweb2Organizations large and small, religious and secular, for-profit and not-for-profit, successful and unsuccessful, go through change. John Reid and Maureen Gallagher of the Reid Group have been instrumental in helping many groups discover the power of Prophetic Planning. This book presents a complete overview with detailed information that any organization will find useful in understanding how to plan for change.

The Art of Change: Faith, Vision and Prophetic Planning, and its companion CD are now available from Liguori Publications as well as from

And that’s it for this month. Look for Transforming Challenges next month–and until then, have a good day and a great week.Kathy Johnson, Editor, Transforming Challenges
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